Author of book about mass Mexican deportation in the 1930’s dies, but legacy continues

NBC Latino

Jorge-Mario Cabrera remembers reading about the estimated 1 million Mexicans and Mexican-Americans deported or scared into leaving their homes in the U.S. by government officials trying desperately to improve the economy during the Great Depression of the 1930s in the book, “Decade of Betrayal,” by Raymond Rodriguez and Francisco Balderrama.

It was the mid-1990s, the book had recently hit shelves, and Cabrera says it was required reading at the University of California at Santa Cruz where he was a community studies major. The co-author, Raymond Rodriguez, recently passed away on June 24 from a heart attack at age 87, but his legacy still strikes a chord in Cabrera, who is of Salvadoran descent, as well as in other immigrants today.

“I thought this could not have happened in my America — in a place that valued justice, freedom and the pursuit of happiness,” says Cabrera, director of communications at…

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